Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, 13 May 2019 - Libya
On Libya, the UN continues to be extremely concerned about the mounting impact of the fighting on civilians in and around Tripoli. There were again reports of casualties from the fighting in Tripoli over the weekend. Today, in Brussels, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Ghassan Salamé, briefed the European Union Foreign Affairs Council on the situation in Libya and also met the Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the German Minister for Foreign Affairs. Mr. Salamé stressed that more than a month after the outbreak of fighting, it is becoming clear to everyone that a military solution cannot replace a political solution, and that it is high time now to return to the negotiating table. Our colleagues on the ground say the humanitarian impact of clashes in and around Tripoli continues to deepen. The UN’s migration agency says nearly 67,000 people have now been driven from their homes, while an estimated 100,000 more people are thought to remain in front‑line areas.
Among those trapped in front‑line areas are approximately 3,200 refugees and migrants in detention centres that are already exposed to, or are in close proximity to, fighting. Access to food, water and health care is severely restricted at these facilities as a result of the conflict. Wherever access is possible, humanitarian partners are continuing to provide aid; more than 34,000 people — including refugees and migrants — have received assistance to date. Humanitarians continue to call on all parties to allow and facilitate rapid, unimpeded and sustained humanitarian access to the affected areas, to allow the evacuation of civilians and the wounded and sick, and the relocation of all refugees and migrants to safer areas.